When my father in law announced us he decided to come over and spend the holidays with us, I was excited about his upcoming visit. I was happy that my son would get a chance to know his grandfather, connect with him and get to hear some of his funny stories. I did not want him to know his grandpa only from our memories. I wished him to experience this first hand.
Actually I got so carried away by his announcement that I even volunteered to pay for his ticket. As soon as he received his new passport, I purchased him the ticket. I never expected anything in return, except a few minutes of his time with my kid, his only grandson.
We all waited impatiently for the days to pass and the day of his arrival, we all went to pick him up from the airport. My son was extremely hyper, if I could say that. The moment he saw his grandpa he ran towards him and tried to jump into his arms, almost knocking him down. My wife and I were quite surprised by our little boy’s enthusiastic reaction. Last time he had seen him, he was less than one year old, so there was not much interaction between the two.
Instead of giving the boy a kiss and hug, my dad shook his hand and brushed him off quickly. He did not seem to be thrilled by my offspring’s welcoming party. On the way back home he complained about his long trip and the airline’s lack of customer service. I hoped that during the following days things would change. They didn’t. He kept on complaining about everything: from his neighbours to the Dental services Boisbriand. Nothing seemed to be good enough to him. He had turned into a grumpy old man who was making my life miserable.
After getting tired of hearing his whining I told him bluntly that I was done trying to please him. Thus I invited him to cook for himself since my food was never on his taste. I showed him the washer and the dryer and asked him to do his own laundry. Also I added that I would appreciate if he could wash his own plate or cup, instead of simply dumping it in the sink.
My wife was afraid that my bluntness would make him uncomfortable. Things were already on a wrong path which made all of us unhappy. What else could have gone wrong?
To my surprise, things improved right away.